Nearly 40% of all fourth graders in this country cannot read at grade level, and this number rises to 60% for children coming from poor families. This gap in learning increases as students go through grade school and is a primary reason for school failure. Ironically, this problem comes at a time when there is research to demonstrate that nearly all children can learn to read if taught using research-based instruction. Here, the authors describe the principles of this research in language that non-educators can understand and educators can use. It discusses how to recognize whether the research on reading is being used appropriately, and if not, how to make that happen. Through the eyes of parents and educators who have succeeded in their own struggles to change the educational system, the book provides the reader with the tools and knowledge for transforming the way reading is taught in their children's classrooms. This book takes the reader step-by-step through an understanding of the research on reading and ways in which a single, determined person can make a difference in the learning ability of every student in our nation's schools.
Part One is a series of chapters written by individuals who discuss what they experienced during these battles and what made them successful. Part Two is written by a series of experts who describe how they have overcome the challenges involved in creating widespread change in school systems. The appendix is filled with resources-people, places, sample tools, a glossary and bibliography to help the reader.
Parents and teachers working together can be an unstoppable force in solving our children's reading problems. This book will guide all who want to strive for a nation of readers. -- Robert Chase, past president of the National Education Association This book has the potential to change an appalling statistic-70%-80% of poor minority children cannot read on grade level. This is a national and personal tragedy that cannot continue to exist. Lyon and Blaunstein lay out the facts, solutions and tools to help parents work to solve this problem. Every parent should know these in order to make the changes needed to eradicate reading failure in our children. -- Quentin Lawson, executive director, National Alliance of Black School Educators I am the parent of an 11-year-old special needs child. She has had a number of problems learning to read. For a parent, navigating the education system can be extremely difficult and frustrating. Everything becomes personal, and the stakes are high. This book was so helpful to me. The resources are outstanding and, frankly, it is good to know we are not in this alone. I will recommend this book as an excellent source for other parents, teachers and administrators. -- Cheryl Kravitz, parent Families and parents know the relationship of reading to their children's academic and long-term success. Many however are unfamiliar with the nuances of evaluating how well reading is taught in their children's schools. Reid and Blaunstein have made a significant contribution to the tools parents have available to support their children's reading instruction. Why Kids Can't Read articulates the challenges parents face with practical solutions and advice on effectively interacting with schools and teachers to support student learning. Parents, teachers and policymakers will appreciate the no-nonsense stance and strategic resources included in this book. -- Brenda Lilienthal Welburn, executive director, National Association of State Boards of Education I believe we all must work together to provide our children with the reading skills they need to succeed in school, get meaningful jobs, and fully participate as citizens of our great nation. Fortunately, we have the means to do so. This book takes us through research-based steps to help nearly every child learn to read. I urge you to think about the experiences of those in this book, take them to heart and learn the lessons they teach. Parents and educators who work together to help children read wellare rewarded by seeing them become excited, successful learners. There is no greater gift one can give to a child. This book will help every adult help every child in every classroom experience the pride and thrill of reading well and all of the learning that results from it.. -- Richard Riley, former U. S. Secretary of Education and former Governor of South Carolina I believe we all must work together to provide our children with the reading skills they need to succeed in school, get meaningful jobs, and fully participate as citizens of our great nation. Fortunately, we have the means to do so. This book takes us through research-based steps to help nearly every child learn to read. I urge you to think about the experiences of those in this book, take them to heart and learn the lessons they teach. Parents and educators who work together to help children read well are rewarded by seeing them become excited, successful learners. There is no greater gift one can give to a child. This book will help every adult help every child in every classroom experience the pride and thrill of reading well and all of the learning that results from it. -- Richard Riley, former U. S. Secretary of Education and former Governor of South Carolina 'This book is meant to help the millions of parents who find their children struggling to learn to read.' So begins this swell collection of twelve essays in which Blaunstein and Lyon walk parents, step-by-step, through the science of reading, how that science has changed real people's lives, and how parents of struggling readers can improve things for their own children as well as others. Impressively, there are no weak essays... If you have a struggling reader in your family, buy it. If you're a policy wonk, buy several copies for those who look to you for guidance with a struggling reader. The Education Gadfly Weekly Overall, this is an extremely informative, helpful book for anyone interested in understanding what the reading wars are about and how to navigate through the propaganda and decipher the facts. I highly recommend this book. The National Ledger In this collection of twelve essays aimed at parents and educators, contributors explain how to use research-based instruction and the science behind it, including five stories from parents, and their tips. Reference and Research Book News This publication needs to be read. Reading Time